UNDP takes action for the first local climate action plans in the earthquake region

March 29, 2024

EU Partnership for Local Climate Action in Türkiye launches action plans for pilot municipalities

The “EU Partnership for Local Climate Action in Türkiye” project has kicked off a crucial phase with the commencement of visits to pilot municipalities selected for the preparation of Local Climate Change Action Plans. These plans will serve as the foundation for producing decision support tools aimed at assisting local authorities in creating effective climate change policies. Additionally, intensive training sessions on climate change risks and impacts will be provided to both public and non-governmental partners to enhance their capacity in addressing climate-related challenges. 

Financed by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the Directorate of Climate Change of the Ministry of Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change (MoEUCC), and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the project aims to strengthen urban resilience across Türkiye in the face of climate change-induced threats. The initiative seeks to equip communities with the means to confront rising temperatures and climate-driven hazards such as wildfires, floods and droughts.

On 23 February 2024, UNDP Türkiye Resident Representative Louisa Vinton and MoEUCC’s Director of Climate Change, Prof. Dr. Halil Hasar, accompanied by city planner Fatma Tok Lazoğlu and UNDP representatives, met with Elazığ Mayor Şahin Şerifoğulları. Visits to other municipalities will follow in the coming days. These engagements aim to foster direct dialogue with local stakeholders, providing them with comprehensive updates on the initiative’s developments and outlining forthcoming steps in the preparation of local climate change action plans. 

UNDP and the Directorate of Climate Change will collaborate to prepare local climate change action plans in cooperation with the six selected pilot municipalities: Antalya, Kahramanmaraş, Ordu, Elazığ, Isparta and Kastamonu, two of them - Kahramanmaraş and Elazığ being in the earthquake region.  

These collaborations focus on exchanging expertise and best practices, mobilizing resources for local climate action initiatives, and providing technical and policy support to enhance municipalities’ environmental responses.  

Elazığ was selected for its climate change related challenges and commitment to sustainable solutions, positioning it as an ideal candidate for pioneering climate adaptation and mitigation strategies. UNDP’s collaboration with Elazığ involves the development and implementation of a local climate change action plan, focusing on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, enhancing the city’s resilience to climate change, and promoting sustainable practices within the community. 

UNDP's engagement in Elazığ spans various projects. With funding from the Government of Sweden, UNDP launched a regional grant program to assist small businesses in 11 earthquake-affected provinces. In Elazığ, the program supported 125 SMEs, with 13 receiving grants exceeding 100 thousand TL. Additionally, Civic Engagement Project, a EUR6 million project, funded by the EU is currently ongoing in the region and aims to strengthen the engagement of civil society organizations and volunteers in local-level governance.